Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Leland Harbor

Back in the studio working from reference from my recent trip. This is the ferry that takes people to the Manitou Islands from Leland. There are no facilities on the two islands--part of Sleeping Bear National Lakeshore--so you visit for a few hours or you camp. I'd like to do that sometime with my painting gear for a few days.
The Manitou Isle, oil, 11" x 16"

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Empire Bluffs

Painting daily makes a difference. I wasn't happy with every one of the pieces I did on my trip last week to Michigan. But I felt progressively better about each one as I painted. This is the last one I did. Looking North toward the Empire Bluffs and South Manitou Island.
Empire Bluffs morning, Oil, 6" x 8"

Monday, August 10, 2009

South Manitou

One of the things I love about painting on Maui is the views of the other islands, calling from the distance to be visited. I found the same this past week in Northwest Michigan. The views from Sleeping Bear Dunes are of North and South Manitou islands. Once logged and farmed, they are now uninhabited parts of the National Lakeshore. Someday I'll get over to them to paint, but for now, I'm happy to be a distant admirer.

South Manitou from Sleeping Bear, oil, 10" x 12"

Saturday, August 8, 2009

More sand in my shoes

I just got back from three days of painting in Northwest Michigan, in and around Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. 450 foot high dunes with commanding views of the coast and the Manitou Islands. This painting was done atop the highest dune. Though discouraged by the park personnel, people run down this very steep dune and then climb back up on all fours. With the sand sliding under your feet, it's easily a heart-pounding, hour workout.

I stayed at the great, little, retro Honor Motel, in the town of Honor with easy access to the park and wi-fi too!

More to come.

South from Sleeping Bear, oil 12" x 9"

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Michigan Dunes

A lot of the plein air tradition in America comes from the California artists of the nineteenth century. The California coast can be very inspiring. I've had a chance to paint there a couple of times in the Newport/Laguna Beach area. Some of today's best plein air artists are based there. I'm looking forward to going back, but it's along ways away. Luckily for me, I have Michigan. The dunes on the West shore are spectacular.

Last weekend I was up North to drop my daughter off at camp and had a day to paint. I did one at Point Betsie that I'm not real happy with. But it was good practice for a larger one I'd like to do. Then I went over to a coastal lookout in Elberta. This is a view looking South.

Michigan shore, oil, 10" x 12"